Opening up Singapore to travellers from abroad: What arrangements are in place so far?

Singapore plans to negotiate air travel bubbles with safe countries or regions. PHOTO: ST FILE

A reciprocal green lane with Indonesia is the latest addition to the arrangements Singapore has made with countries to relax travel restrictions. Here are the arrangements so far:


Singapore has unilaterally opened its borders to travellers from Brunei and New Zealand (from Sept 1), as well as Vietnam and Australia excluding Victoria state (from Oct 8). Such openings are a standing invitation from Singapore to these countries, which have comprehensive public health surveillance systems and have successfully controlled the spread of Covid-19.

Visitors have to apply for the Air Travel Pass that allows all forms of short-term travel, including leisure travel. They have to take a swab test upon arrival, and can go about their activities after they get a negative test result.

They will have to use the TraceTogether app during their stay here, among other conditions.

Singapore also plans to negotiate air travel bubbles with safe countries or regions - an arrangement for general travellers that does not require a controlled itinerary.


China (from June 8)

China was the first country to establish a green lane with Singapore. The arrangement applies to Shanghai, Tianjin, Chongqing, Guangdong, Jiangsu and Zhejiang. It will gradually be expanded to other provinces and municipalities.

Malaysia (from Aug 17)

Two schemes are in place: The Reciprocal Green Lane, for short-term essential business and official travellers; and the Periodic Commuting Arrangement, for longer-term travel for work and business-related travel.

But the Health Ministry announced yesterday that travellers arriving from Sabah from 11.59pm tomorrow, including those under the two schemes, have to serve 14-day stay-home notices at dedicated facilities.

There are also reciprocal green lanes with Brunei (from Sept 1), South Korea (from Sept 4), Japan (from Sept 18) and Indonesia (applications to begin on Oct 26).

Discussions are ongoing for certain places, such as Thailand and Hong Kong.


Given the severity of the pandemic in some countries, travellers from these places have to serve a 14-day quarantine at dedicated government facilities and take a swab test before the end of their quarantine period.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 13, 2020, with the headline Opening up S'pore to travellers: What arrangements are in place so far?. Subscribe